Which is the best credit card?

credit-cards-smallEveryone wants to know what the best credit card is, but nobody wants to hear the real answer: there is NO best credit card, only the best credit card for you. Consider:

  • If you have a balance on your credit card, the best card for you is the one with the lowest interest rate.
  • If you pay your full balance every month, the best credit card for you is a rewards credit card, BUT…
  • The best rewards card for you depends on… you. Do you want airline miles, cash back or gift cards, points toward merchandise rewards, or some other rewards scheme?

See? There is no best credit card. But we are happy to give you our ideas on the top credit card or cards in various categories, in order to help you choose which card is best for you:

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Zero Interest Credit Cards

zero-percentBelow is a list of credit cards that offer zero percent interest rates on new purchases AND balance transfers for at least 12 billing cycles. Note that after the zero percent period the rate changes back to the higher, “normal” rate offered by that card. Also understand that most 0% balance transfer offers include a balance transfer fee. All of these cards have no annual fee.
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Review: Discover Credit Cards

discover-credit-cardDiscover offers a number of different credit cards intended for various types of customers and with various reward program options. Below is a list of credit cards issued by Discover, with a brief overview / review of each:

  • Discover It Card – The flagship Discover Card offers a 1% rebate on all purchases, and you can earn a 5% rebate on purchases in certain spending categories each quarter. (You get double these rewards for the first year as a new cardholder.) Also offers an introductory 0% rate on purchases and balance transfers for 14 months. Note that in order to get the added rebate in the 5% spending categories you must sign up each quarter or you will only get 1% cash back in those categories.  The Discover It Card is a much better deal than previous Discover Card offerings in terms of the cash back offered, but you might also want to visit our Cash Rebate Credit Cards page to compare Discover It to competitor cards.

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Review: HSN Credit Card

hsn-credit-cardThe HSN credit card allows you to buy on credit on HSN (formerly Home Shopping Network) and also offers you various HSN discounts. But be careful of that interest rate and those “VIP” financing offers! Our overview / review of the HSN credit card is below:

The first thing to understand about the HSN credit card is that it can only be used at HSN, nowhere else. (There used to be an HSN MasterCard that could be used other places, too, but that’s no longer offered.) A credit card with such limited acceptance is something to be wary of — opening a new line of credit can hurt your credit rating, especially if your credit history is shaky, so you don’t want to open a new line of credit that you can barely use, especially if your credit is not great.
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Review: Brooks Brothers Credit Card

brooks-brothers-credit-cardWell-known apparel retailer Brooks Brothers, in partnership with Citibank (changed recently from Synchrony Bank), offers a credit card you can use to earn points toward future Brooks Brothers purchases. Below we offer an overview / review of the card to help you decide if it is for you:

The first thing to understand about the Brooks Brothers card is that by applying you are actually agreeing to be accepted for either of 2 different cards:

  1. The Brooks Brothers MasterCard, which can be used at Brooks Brothers and anywhere else MasterCard is accepted, or
  2. The Brooks Brothers store credit, which is accepted only at Brooks Brothers and offers fewer rewards and a higher interest rate.

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Average Credit Card Rates – July 2015

average-card-ratesThe current average credit card rate for the overall market is 18.31%, an ever-so-slight tick up from the 18.30% average of last month (which itself was the highest average we’d calculated in the past year). By comparison, the average rate at this time last year was 17.71%, over half a percentage point lower (60 basis points). Below you’ll find current average rates in several card categories:

  • The average rate for low interest credit cards with no rewards remained unchanged at 15.67%. (Last year’s average rate in this category was just 14.41%; making this a key driver of rate changes in the current market.)
  • The average rate for rewards credit cards remained at 18.47%. (Last year’s average rate at this time: 17.70%.)
  • The average rate for department store / retail credit cards increased to 22.61%, up from 22.55% last month and causing the slight overall increase in the market as a whole. (The retail credit card average, while very high, is actually down slightly from last year at this time, when a 22.84% rate was calculated.)

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Unsecured Credit Cards For Bad Credit

bad_creditIf you have bad credit and you’re looking for a credit card, it’s easy to get a secured credit card that charges an annual fee, but it’s more difficult to be accepted for an unsecured credit card with no fee. We’ve created a list of unsecured credit cards that you might apply for even with bad credit. There is no guarantee any of these will accept you, but these are cards that either work with average to poor credit people, or have been rumored to give a second chance to those with bad credit.
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Brooks Brothers Credit Card Payment, Login, and Customer Service Information

brooks-brothers-credit-cardBrooks Brothers credit cards are issued in partnership with Citibank (recently changed from Synchrony Bank), and it is Citi you will interact with in order to pay your bill online or by mail, or to get customer service assistance. Below you’ll find the info you need to complete any of these tasks:

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Review: Kay Jewelers Credit Card

kay-jewelers-credit-cardKay Jewelers offers a credit card that allows you to stretch out payments on your jewelry purchases, often at a 0% interest rate. But you’ll want to be careful and read the fine print. Our overview / review of the Kay credit card is below:

The first thing to know about the Kay Jewelers credit card is that it can only be used for purchases at Kay; it is not accepted at any other stores. So, you’ll want to ask yourself whether it makes sense to open a credit line for a card with such limited acceptance. Would you be better off just using a credit card already in your wallet?
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Instant Approval Credit Cards

yesterday2Instant approval credit cards can mean one of two things:

  • You get approved today but don’t get the card until later.
  • You get approved today and can instantly begin using your new credit line.

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Review: Younkers Credit Card

younkers-credit-cardRegional department store chain Younkers, in partnership with Comenity Bank, offers a credit card that allows you to earn reward points toward future Younkers purchases. Our overview / review of the Younkers credit card is below:

The Younkers credit card is accepted at Younkers and also its sister stores throughout the country: Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson Pirie Scott, Elder-Beerman, and Herberger’s. This is a fairly limited acceptance, so a question to ask is: Do I shop at Younkers often enough for it to be worth opening up another credit line?
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Business Credit Cards

inkcashcardThere are two types of business credit card: corporate credit cards for large businesses and small business credit cards. Corporate cards are generally easy to understand, but small business credit cards can be confusing.

Probably the most important thing to understand about small business credit cards is that in almost all cases the person who applies for the card will be taking on the credit risk personally. In other words, if you own a small business and apply for a business credit card, anything you do with that card goes on your personal history, and if you default on the card the debt is on your personal record.
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